Archives for December 2013

One of these things is not like the other …

One of these things is not like the other … Courtesy of This is the time when everyone is making financial and economic forecasts for the upcoming year and beyond. Here is a simple forecast from Sober Look that did not require much analysis. By the end of 2014, student loan balances held by the […]

Happy New Year (and Some British Humor)

Courtesy of Mish. Looking for a laugh? Play the video below “Putting Out the Dog“ Link if video does not play: Mrs. Brown’s Boys Happy new year to you and your loved ones! Wishing 2014 to be your best year ever. Mike “Mish” Shedlock Continue Here

Apple Denies Working With NSA on iPhone Backdoors; NSA Toolbox Catalog; Celebrate the New Year: 1984

Courtesy of Mish. Today Apple denied creating backdoors on the iPhone for the NSA to exploit. First let’s review some articles that preceded the denial. Within the last few days came numerous reports NSA Reportedly Has Total Access To The Apple iPhone. Back in September, Der Spiegel online reported iSpy: How the NSA Accesses Smartphone […]

Why Did the Justice Department Kill the Madoff Subpoena Against JPMorgan?

Courtesy of Pam Martens. Attorney General Eric Holder Testifying Before the House Judiciary Committee on May 15, 2013 Since December 16, major business media have failed to dig deeper into a potentially blockbuster story involving the Justice Department’s refusal to honor a Wall Street regulator’s request for a subpoena against JPMorgan Chase to obtain Madoff […]

France in Review: Perfect Track Record of Economic Ineptitude

Courtesy of Mish. In 2013 France stood out as the perfect model of economic ineptitude. It’s very difficult to be perfect at anything, even failure. France managed. Here are some headlines. December 19, 2013: 50 Foreign Companies Operating in France Sound the Alarm December 16, 2013: Sharp Decline in France PMI; Private Sector Employment Drops […]

Exxon Shares up on Rosneft Deal

By Charles Kennedy of Oil Price  As ExxonMobil (XOM) predicts a 35% increase in global energy demand by 2040, the company’s shares have soared to a new 15-month high on a deal with Russia’s Rosneft and news of declining unemployment claims. It’s been a stellar year for Exxon Mobil, with shares rising 1.6% to $100.81 in […]

When it comes to current account imbalances, one nation stands out

Courtesy of Over the past few decades there has been a great deal of focus on the large trade imbalance between the US and Asia – first with Japan and more recently with China. While that is still an issue, we may be facing a new imbalance that is starting to grab the attention of […]

Fast Facts: Bad News for Housing–Two Straight Months of Declining Sales

Courtesy of Lee Adler of the Wall Street Examiner The NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index had its second straight year to year decline in November. This index represents contracts signed during the month. Most result in closed sales within 30 to 60 days. This is as close as we get to a real time barometer of […]

TruPS CDOs Explained – With Charts

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here. Submitted by Tyler Durden. Over the past two weeks, Trust Preferred (or TruPS) CDOs have gained prominent attention as a result of being the first, and so far only, security that the recently implemented and largely watered-down, Volcker Rule has frowned upon, and leading various regional banks, such […]

The Volcker Rule’s Major Miss & Kim Kardashian’s Bikini Bod

The Volcker Rule's Major Miss & Kim Kardashian's Bikini Bod Courtesy of Nomi Prins Something isn't always better than nothing. (This piece originally appeared at Truthdig. Also, hat-tip to Pam Martens at www.wallstreetonparade.)  The subject of heated debate in financial circles, the Volcker Rule, which was originally passed as part of the 2010 Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer […]

Joke Headline of the Day: “Pending Home Sales Rise”; Five Housing Headwinds

Courtesy of Mish. I was perusing online stories about today’s release of pending homes sales data from the National Association of Realtors. Here are a few sample headlines. NAR: Pending Home Sales Edge Up in November CNBC: US pending home sales rise 0.2 percent Calculated Risk: Pending Home Sales Index increased 0.2% in November Forbes: […]

Presenting The Definition Of Irony

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here. Submitted by Tyler Durden. The trapped-in-the-Antarctic-ice Australian research vessel's mission, among others, is to examine the effect of global warming on a receding Antarctic ice shelf… (h/t @Pedlar7) Via The Spirit of Mawson blog (the research blog), "Until recently it was thought this ice sheet was stable, sitting […]

Judge Bars San Jose from Imposing Voter-Approved Pension Cuts; Hollow Victory for Unions

Courtesy of Mish. On December 24, a state court judge barred the city of San Jose, California, from imposing voter-approved pension cuts on current municipal worker. San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed, a Democrat, encouraged voters in his city to back municipal pension cuts he proposed as part of last year’s Measure B, which drew 70 […]

What Blows Up First? Part 1: Europe

Courtesy of John Rubino. 2013 was a year in which lots of imbalances built up but none blew up. The US and Japan continued to monetize their debt, in the process cheapening the dollar and sending the yen to five-year lows versus the euro. China allowed its debt to soar with only the hint of […]

Is the New York Fed Too Deeply Conflicted to Regulate Wall Street?

Courtesy of Pam Martens. William C. (Bill) Dudley, President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York The Federal Reserve System that is charged with setting monetary policy in the United States consists of a Board of Governors in Washington, D.C. and 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks. The Board of Governors functions as an independent […]

Toxic Smoke Cloud Engulfs Greece; Six Years of Relentless Recession; Horrific Statistics

Courtesy of Mish. Please consider a mass of grim statistics regarding Greece, via translation from the El Pais article: Ruined Greece takes the helm of the EU in the first half of 2014. On January 1, Greece assumes the rotating presidency of the European Union in a state close to suffocation, not only via austerity […]

Shock Therapy Can ‘Erase’ Bad Memories, Brain Researchers Show

By Helen Shen, Huffington Post In the film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, unhappy lovers undergo an experimental brain treatment to erase all memories of each other from their minds. No such fix exists for real-life couples, but researchers report today in Nature Neuroscience that a targeted medical intervention helps to reduce specific negative memories in patients who are […]

Sabrient’s Baker’s Dozen for 2014

If you missed Sabrient's Baker's Dozen last year, here's your chance to check it out for 2014.  Sabrient's annual Baker's Dozen Portfolio is hands down their most popular product. And why not? It's a gift that keeps on giving! Baker's Dozen 2013, published in January and meant to be held for 12 months, is on track to be […]

Daily price data underestimates stock beta

Courtesy of Those who manage market neutral equity portfolios spend a great deal of time estimating betas (see definition) of individual holdings. The goal is to measure the amount of index-equivalent exposure needed to offset the "market-sensitive" component of each stock's volatility. This often becomes more of an art than a science, with dozens of […]

Voters Take Negative View of Labor Unions; Liberals in Favor of Strikes (Until Strikes Happen); Aging Population an Anti-Union Force?

Courtesy of Mish. In what is decidedly a good thing for California as well as the nation at-large, a recent Field Poll shows California Voters Take Negative View of Labor Unions. According to the latest Field Poll, California voter views of labor unions have taken a decidedly negative turn over the past two and one-half […]

Cowgirls Wearing Pink Shades

Courtesy of Tim Knight from Slope of Hope. (Originally posted on Slope of Hope, hence the references to Slopers and SOH): Well, my fellow Slope-a-Dopes, I just could not bear sitting in silence any longer while all the blabbering bulls boast and gloat as they roast bear chestnuts over an open fire.  Enjoy your happy holidays […]

New Law in France: Limos Must Wait 15 Minutes Minimum Before Picking Up Rides

Courtesy of Mish. Want to arrange a limo in France to take you to the airport or go on a private tour? Thanks to a new law in France, you have to wait a minimum of 15 minutes except at 4 or 5 star hotels. The reason: taxis persuaded government that chauffeur driven limos are […]

Steve Keen (Briefly) Explains Why Janet Yellen Won’t See The Next Big One Coming

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here. Submitted by Tyler Durden. "Conventional economic theory says 'crisis don't happen' unless they are hit by an [outside] shock" exclaims Steve Keen, adding that numerous Nobel Prize winning economists have suggested that "capitalism is stable…" and "the problem of avoiding depressions has been solved for many decades." But […]

French Constitutional Court Approves 75% Tax on High Earners

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here. Submitted by Tyler Durden. Almost a year ago, the French constitutional court ruled against Francois Hollande's triumphal blast into socialist wealth redistribution, with his proposed 75% tax rate on high earners, and so indefinitely delayed the exodus of the bulk of French high earners (even if some, like […]